5 Tips for a Successful Telephone Interview

With so much demand for jobs it is now becoming more common for employers to arrange a telephone interview with applicants before inviting them in for an interview. A telephone interview is your first opportunity to impress the employer so it is important to not treat it with any less importance than a face to face interview.

However, people come across differently on the phone than in person so for many a telephone interview is a daunting prospect, especially for those who are inexperienced with them. But there are several simple things to keep in mind in order to come across as confident and professional to help you land a face to face interview with the company.

1. Smile and be confident. 

We all know the best way to appear happy and confident. Smiling! Even though the interviewer can’t see your face, smiling actually makes our voice sound happier and friendlier. Relax and smile and you should come across as positive and confident.

2. Be professional.

We all know how to behave professionally in an office environment but being at home can sometimes make people feel a bit too comfortable. Would you sit in an interview sipping a cup of tea or watching the TV? Of course you wouldn’t. So don’t do it in a phone interview either! Try and find a quiet room with no distractions so that the only thing you are concentrating on is giving fantastic answers. Some people even find dressing smartly as you would for an interview helps them get into a professional mind frame.

3. Speak clearly.

Good communication is an essential skill that all employers look for. So don’t ruin your chances by not speaking clearly down the phone. Believe it or not, standing up and walking around can help your voice to come across more effectively. It’s always a good idea to practice interview questions, so why not have a practice phone interview? Get a friend to ask you some questions on the phone, and they can advise you on whether you came across as clear and confident.

4. Be prepared.

Make sure you have all the necessary documents in front of you. This includes you CV, a copy of your application if you have one and the job spec. It is very likely that you will be questioned on your past experience and your suitability to the role on offer Therefore you want to be able to quickly glance at your CV or job spec to guide your answers and avoid potential mind blocks. If you are having the interview on a mobile phone make sure you have plenty of battery and full signal, as cutting out in an interview is very unprofessional and disruptive.

5. Listen.

Whenever your interviewer is speaking, do not interrupt them. Wait for them to ask the whole of the question before jumping in with an answer. Speaking over each other can be confusing over the phone, so use this to your advantage and use the time to think of a good answer.